Day 17: Wormy Thanks

No, this is not about fishing. My thanks today is completely related to books.

Hi, my name is Tina and I’m a book a holic. For the last 5yrs I have arranged my work schedule around this sale, which happens 4 times a year. Today I bought 13 hardbacks and 9 paperbacks and spent $15.75. My favorite find was a 2vol. Tyndale Word Study NT and Concordance. I have wanted a set of these for-ehhhh-ver. When I spotted them on the bottom shelf, in the back corner of the last room, I let out a squeal of delight. My daughter was on the other side of the room and she said she heard me.

When I was a pastor, I was very intentional about growing my library. When I transitioned from the senior pastorate to chaplaincy I sold off a big chunk because we needed the money. When I left ministry and counseling I sold a large part of my library and then again a few years later I weeded through my collection again. I’ve made a habbit in recent years to either donate books back to the library or to my church library. It’s a good thing to do and makes room for new additions. 🙂

So this little bookworm is thankful for books today. And happy too.

Day 16 TGIF or TGITD

I have always thought that it was a bit unfair to favor one day over another. I spent most of my life as a workaholic, so there was little time for rest on the weekend. It seemed to me that all the thankfulness for Friday was a bunch of hoo-ha. Age and perspective have tempered my opinion on this, but probably not in the way you would think.

Nope. I’m not a big fan of living for one day, banking all my hope on the end of trudging off to the workplace. Nope. I love everyday equally. I treasure the breath put into each day. I enjoy living now. For me, it really is TGITD: thank God it’s this day, or TGIT: thank God it’s today.

This IS the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it.

Day 15 Frankful

No. This doesn’t haven’t anything to do with hot dogs. Today I’m thankful for time with a friend. I went over to a friend’s house for lunch. On the way I stopped and picked up a Pumpkin Caramel Pecan latte for each of us. We savored our yummy beverages and visited for a while. When it was time for lunch she asked if I wanted to go out to eat since she didn’t have anything in the house that I could eat. (Smile.) So we went to a little Mom and Pop’s restaurant in the crossroad town near her. I ordered liver and onions and was so verrrrrry happy I did. Melt in your mouth tender with just the right amount of onions. So yummy.

Then we went back to her house and talked for a couple hours. It was so nice. She has surgery the week after Thanksgiving so it may be a few weeks until we get together again. In the meantime we’re looking for recipes for things to make for Christmas. We did that last year and it was fun to make and even more fun to give.

Day 14 Too Busy to Be Thankful

How about too tired? The day was full, demanding my attention and when I was completing a task, I was reading Stephen James’ “Placebo” and loving it. Then at 8:30 with my Nook in my hand, I fell asleep in the living room chair. Today was one of those days that served as a reminder to not allow the urgent to crowd out what’s truly important.

The good news is, while I may not have put fingers to keyboard to let y’all in on my thoughts, I was a really thankful camper. I had to get my 89yr old little lady up and to the doctor’s office by 9:40. On the surface, this appeared to be an impossibility, especially since she’s been sleeping soundly until ten or eleven each day. But I am thankful that she woke up and cooperated and we got the doctor’s office and were only ten minutes late. Then within an hour, we were home and she was sipping on tea. As if that wasn’t enough to be thankful for, she superceeded ever expectation I could ever have by staying sweet spirited throughout the trip and during the rest of my shift.

Thankful. Yep. That’s me.

Day 13 On My Honor, I Am Thankful

Today as I was thinking over my long list of things to be thankful for, I started thinking about the adults who gave of themselves to mold me into the person I have been and am becoming. Does that thought seem as odd to you as it does to me? I’m 55 and I am still becoming. Not too many years ago, I wouldn’t have understood that, but now it is something for which I am thankful. Perhaps I’ll write more about that another day.

As I sat here trying to decide whether to write about Sunday school teachers, youth pastors, or school teachers, I was flooded with my fond memories of my time in Girl Scouts: winter camping (minus the freezing latrine); learning to bake and sew; cookie and calendar sales; and sweet friendships. I met the most influential person in my life through Girl Scouts. Whether I realized it or not, I was given solid examples of strong women, women in leadership. These women filled in the gap for my mother when she functioning more as supportive wife than nurturing mother. (This was an awareness we both came to over one of those really deep conversations while playing Scrabble.)

I tried to be a Girl Scout leader when we lived in Wisconsin. I had to quit. It’s hard work and I wasn’t in a place with enough support to do an adequate job. My girls were very young and needed more of me and I was attempting to pastor a struggling congregation far away from family and friends. Realizing how much time, energy, planning, and creativity it took to be a G.S. leader grew my appreciation for the women who filled those roles a hundred-fold.

So to those women, thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. And even though I won’t eat even one, I will buy my share of cookies this year in honor of you and support of all those women out there now who give so much.

Day 11: Gratuities

(You know how all the videos you want to connect to start with a 20 or 30 ad these days? Well, here’s your ad: don’t forget to tip your server. Both of my daughters have worked in the food industry. Younger daughter supports herself and her young son that way. She’s quite amazing at her job. In fact, when she was being interviewed for her current position the manager stated quite emphatically: Anyone who didn’t hire you is a fool. The problem is that people are tight, especially in this economy. But servers count on tips. Leaving a track is insulting and gives believers a black eye. Dine resposibly.)

Ok, here’s what I’m really wanting to say…I looked up the word gratuity and one of the definitions is to be given something without claim or demand. Sounds like grace to me. I am thankful for grace, mercy, and favor. There have been times in my life where I didn’t get what I deserved (mercy) and when by divine intervention I received undeserved consideration (favor). I would love to say that I have always been grateful for these things, but quite honestly, I missed some and refused others.

Isn’t that crazy? Yet we do it all the time. People have reached out with blessings and I felt like I didn’t deserve them, shouldn’t accept them, and walk away from them. Too often pride or shame or some goofy combination of the two keep us from accepting gifts and blessings. It makes even less sense when you understand that we have been blessed to be a blessing (Gen. 12:2).

Well, my purpose isn’t to preach…just to be thankful and invite you to keep your eyes open for the graces that come your way this week. Don’t be so focused on looking for the showers of blessings that you miss the mercy drops falling around you!

Day 8: Thankyouverymuch

Funny thing happened on the way to the blog post…I sat at my computer, hands on keyboard, fingers primed to type out my thoughts, and…I suddenly was overwhemed with gratitude. The very thought of pick one thing to be thankful for this morning seemed utterly absurd. There was litterally a flood of things that came to mind. So just awash in the awareness of how blessed my life is. And to top it off…I was awakened over an hour early by the dogs needing an emergency potty run. That might have set the course of my day into a downward spiral, but instead I have been most productive: in housework, administrative necessities, and writing. I’m really quite into it and don’t want to stop, but I have an appointment to get my teeth cleaned (another not favorite thing in my life, and yet I find myself grateful even for this).

Here are a pics that make me smile…just things that came to mind this morning…things I am thankful for:

<img src="Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App” alt=”Bible study” />

<img src="All in Bibs” alt=”” />

<img src="Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App” alt=”null” />

<img src="Photobucket” alt=”” />

<img src="Saying Goodbye” alt=”” />

<img src="Photobucket” alt=”” />

And with that, I’m off to the dentist and to get my replacement driver’s lisence. TTFN

Day 7: Thankitudes

Today would have been my father’s seventy-seventh birthday. He died in 1989 after a vicious battle with cancer. I miss him. He wasn’t an affectionate man. I often said that hugging him was like hugging a tree, but I still hugged him. He was critical and demanding, but I still find myself trying to please him.

For all the things that I might have considered lacking or negative about my dad and my relationship with him, there were some valuable gifts he passed onto me.

  • I learned how to be a compassionate manager of people who is able to get more work done, but not just quantitatively but qualitatively as well.
  • I observed and learned from him to not be afraid of a situation that others deem a loss. He was gifted at going into offices that were falling apart on many levels and helped to turn them around to award winning offices. He was able to see the possibilities and helped others to catch that vision and bring it into reality.
  • One of Dad’s mantras was: K.I.S.S.: keep it simple stupid. Good advice.
  • My dad was a company man: loyal and dedicated. I get that.
  • My dad loved to laugh. I can still see him throwing his head back and laughing from his toes.
  • My dad loved to get together with friends.
  • My dad loved good music and I saw him dance.

I could probably go on and on. He wasn’t a perfect man, but when he died his family was at his side. We shed a few tears, but we also laughed as remembered his life.  I will never forget the note that the hospice worker logged about those moments together as family: “family remembering and grieving well.” He wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.

Postscript: my deep appreciation for hospice came out of this experience. These are very good people. What they do and provide for families is something to be abundantly thankful for as well.

Today is my older grandson’s birthday. He turns 7 today. He lives with our former son-in-law. We don’t get to see him as much as the others, but we treasure him as much as we do the rest. Ever since our granddaughter was born, I have referred to these kiddos as the grandsweeties. The sweetness that these precious children have added to our lives is immeasurable.

So our granddaughter, P, will be 9 in a few weeks. And A turns 7 in January. I often said that if I had known how special grands were I would have had more children. Then I began to feel like the only way we would get more is through grafting. And I was right. Older daughter is engaged and with a new SIL we will graft little K into the fold. She will turn 7 in January, too. Younger daughter has recently started dating a man who has two little girls, so maybe we’ll be blessed with even a few more!

As precious as these wee ones are to me, they mean that much more to my husband. When it came time to plan his 50th birthday, I asked if he wanted a party. He said yes and smiled. He wanted and had his party at Chuck E. Cheese, or as we fondly call it: The house of Mouse. When the guy who signed us in asked whose birthday it was we all pointed at Pepa. The guy was a little surprised, but Pepa wore the birthday badge quite proudly.

Pepa must have a thing for mice because when it came time to plan our 30th anniversary, he informed me that our big day would be celebrated the following year with daughters and grandsweeties at the Big Mouse House in Orland. And we did.

So today, I am abundantly thankful for the sweetness our grandchildren have brought into our lives and for the joys that are to come!

Thank-full Tankful

While that title might lead one to believe that I am thankful for the slowly decreasing price on gas again…and while I am that for sure, this is about something completely different.

I am thankful for the beautiful maple trees around my house. We have seven very large and mature maple trees: four in the front and three on the side. I love their shade in the summer. I love the canopy of green that covers me as I sit out on my front patio. Before I ever got inside this house, I was drawn to it because of the trees.

I love the beautiful leaves in the fall. The colors are warm, all yellow, orange, and red. And we end up with a whopping leaf pile!!! Today was the end of the leaf pile. Nelson, Asher, and I spent a couple hours out front blowing, raking, and shoveling leaves. I find it easier to move the heavy wet leaves by shoveling them to the edge of the street (we don’t have curbs, because we have no sidewalk). It was fun to work together. And it was really nice to see the front patio and flower beds leaf-free.

Time with family. Leaf-free front patio. And a two hour work out. It’s all good and I’m all thank-full!

%d bloggers like this: